Yes we can, and yes we did

The McLeod River Post - - News - Ian McInnes

We de­cided to sell our prop­erty this sum­mer. As a com­bi­na­tion of an experiment to see just how ef­fec­tive the advertising in the dig­i­tal The McLeod River Post was and not want­ing to see our prop­erty ad­ver­tised in another pub­li­ca­tion we set out to sell by owner.

We had bought the prop­erty through a sale by owner process a few years ago and had the pa­per­work on file and with the help of a very good lo­cal lawyer we were pretty con­fi­dent in our abil­ity to see a sale through.

We’ve moved around a lot, too much some might may say, in­clud­ing go­ing back and forth across the pond to and from the UK three times so far. We like to think that we are ef­fec­tive even to go as far good at get­ting a prop­erty ready for sale.

With a tar­get of putting the prop­erty on the mar­ket by the end of July we set out to clear up and clear out, ba­si­cally de­clut­ter­ing. It we hadn’t used some­thing for years. Why did we need to keep it? What had a value we sold if we could ev­ery­thing else was re­cy­cled or trashed. We know from long ex­pe­ri­ence that a clut­tered house does not show well and leads po­ten­tial buy­ers to think­ing there’s not enough stor­age.

There was also a mat­ter of tidy­ing up the dé­cor. Paint­ing walls is not ex­pen­sive and re­vi­talises a room. We also went around and did those nig­gly jobs that you just don’t get around to. Mi­nor fixes that take more time than money. We ap­plied the same the­ory to the yard and out­build­ings. Clear­ing up and clear­ing out.

By the third week of July fol­low­ing a deep clean and a fi­nal de­clut­ter we reck­oned we were ready to go on the mar­ket.

The first thing we had to set was the price. It had to be a lit­tle above what we would ac­cept and re­al­is­tic with other prop­er­ties that were on the mar­ket around us and what a po­ten­tial len­der would lend against for a po­ten­tial buyer. If any­thing we set the price a lit­tle on the low side com­pared to com­pet­ing prop­er­ties. Yes, you can set a higher price and then drop it but we know from ex­pe­ri­ence that those first few weeks when your prop­erty goes on the mar­ket are the best for at­tract­ing in­ter­est. If the price is too high buy­ers could dis­count our prop­erty and look at another in­stead.

The other thing we think about set­ting a high price is that yes, you may have buy­ers in­ter­ested but they’ll no­tice the price drop­ping and wait for it to go fur­ther. This process could drag on for months, some­times years, not good.

Next mar­ket­ing. We had the ad­van­tage of own­ing our own dig­i­tal news­pa­per so it was good photos and a good, in this case, full page ad in the The McLeod River Post. The ad went in ev­ery is­sue from the last week of July. We also de­signed the ad so it would fit the re­quire­ments of Face­book and we spent money on boost­ing it. Not con­tent with that we also ad­ver­tised on Ki­jiji and put the Face­book ad on var­i­ous selling groups around the re­gion. A for sale by owner sign bought from the hard­ware store and placed in a prom­i­nent place at the end of the drive com­pleted our mar­ket­ing ef­forts.

One of the most dif­fi­cult things for a prop­erty seller is keep­ing the place tidy and ready for show­ings. Even more dif­fi­cult when you have pets, kids and are try­ing to run a busi­ness and live your life. It’s stress­ful for all of the fam­ily to have to live like that.

While many peo­ple like pets, many don’t. As far as hu­manly pos­si­ble we kept the pets away when we had a view­ing. We also think it’s a good idea to have your prop­erty look­ing like the pic­tures that you’re mar­ket­ing with or a buyer could be­come con­fused, even dis­ap­pointed.

Some view­ers give you plenty of no­tice be­fore they come around, some vir­tu­ally none. We reckon we could be ready in un­der 20 min­utes. Some view­ers will drive you crazy and you just have to smile and take it as they cheer­fully an­nounce af­ter go­ing through all your cup­boards for hours that they’re nowhere near ready to buy but are just look­ing.

We were very pleased with the re­sponse to our ads. One view­ing came from Ki­jiji, three from Face­book ads in other groups and five (in­clud­ing the buyer and stand­bys) through the news­pa­per. At one point our Face­book reach for the news­pa­per ads ex­ceeded 6,000 for nearly three weeks.

If you are go­ing to use Face­book then we don’t think that sim­ply post­ing for free cuts it. Be pre­pared to spend a lit­tle cash and boost those ads. In all in­clud­ing boost­ing on Face­book and Ki­jiji if we had bought our news­pa­per space we reckon it would have cost a lit­tle un­der $1,000 for our mar­ket­ing.

To sum up we’ve ac­cepted an of­fer, with two oth­ers wait­ing in the wings should any­thing go wrong, and we will be clos­ing soon. It’s not easy but yes we can, and yes we did.

In all in­clud­ing boost­ing on Face­book and Ki­jiji if we had bought our news­pa­per space we reckon it would have cost a lit­tle un­der $1,000 for our mar­ket­ing.”

File photo The McLeod River Post

From list­ing to com­ple­tion in just un­der 90 days.

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